The Greater Lansing region is a lot of things to a lot of people, but for a few special days in May it will be the focal point of the Women’s college golf world as it hosts the Division 1 NCAA Regional Championships. Eighteen different qualifying teams and 6 qualifying individuals from universities from across the country will come to battle it out on the links May 6-8 at East Lansing’s Forest Akers West.
The event, the first NCAA golf event in the area since 2002, was brought to the community through a partnership formed with Michigan State University, the Spartan Women’s golf team and the Greater Lansing Sports Authority. “Securing this high-profile tournament for Greater Lansing was a real labor of love,” said Meghan Ziehmer, Associate Executive Director for the Greater Lansing Sports Authority. “We bid on this event back in 2016, and since then have gone to site visits in Ohio, Wisconsin, Texas and Florida to truly understand the nuances of the tournament and be ready every expectation of the event. It was a team effort to sell the tournament planners on the Greater Lansing area and its courses and this partnership is proud to get the chance to welcome this first-rate event.”
The host hotel for the event, the Radisson Hotel Lansing at the Capitol, will welcome the golf teams, coaches and dozens of officials and NCAA representatives. Up to a thousand more spectators are expected to stay at numerous other are hotels throughout the community providing a significant shot in the arm for the local economy. The event in East Lansing is one of four women’s regional tournaments being held by the NCAA this May 6-8, with the eventual national championship event being held May 17-22 at The Blessings Golf Club in Fayetteville, Arkansas hosted by the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
The high-profile regional NCAA women’s golf event is a particularly important event for the Greater Lansing community as it is the first of three major men's and women's college golf tournaments headed to the area in the near future. In 2020 Greater Lansing will host the Men’s NCAA Division 1 Regional Championship event at Eagle Eye Golf Club. In 2021 Greater Lansing will host the Women’s NCAA Division III National Championships at Forest Akers West golf course. The success in securing these high-profile NCAA golf events speaks to the strength of the partnership with MSU, Spartan golf and the GLSA.
“Approximately 125-150 people from other NCAA institutions will come to participate and bring another 500-1000 fans that will see what Lansing has to offer,” said Seth Kessler, MSU Associate Athletic Director /Facilities, Event Management. “Lansing is becoming a truly sought-after destination due to the GLSA and its efforts and this tournament will give people another reason to spread the news about what is happening here.”
For more information about the tournament or the GLSA, visit www.lansingsports.org.